Boise Police Department
News Release

William L. Bones
Chief of Police

Contact: BPD Media Relations Office


Thursday, November 13, 2008

11-13-08 Keep Boise Beautiful Day Event

11-13-08 Keep Boise Beautiful Day Event

***Please note the important issues regarding photographic coverage of graffiti

Boise, Nov. 13, 2008 - Boise Police, Mayor Bieter, and dozens of citizen volunteers are joining together in what’s become an annual effort to rid the city of an eyesore – graffiti vandalism.
It’s important for citizens to know that:

• Graffiti is a crime that degrades neighborhoods and can destroy property values.
• Graffiti should immediately be reported for police documentation, then promptly removed by the property owner.
• Report graffiti by calling Boise Police Dispatch at 377-6790.

Who: Boise Police Officers, Mayor Bieter, Volunteers

What: Keep Boise Beautiful Day

Where: Teams will be assigned to areas all around the city.
Interested media should meet in the east parking lot at Barrister.

When: Saturday, Nov. 15th, 9:30 a.m. until approx 2:00 p.m.

Why: To clean up the city and send the message to vandals that their
destructive crimes are not tolerated. 

***Photo/Video Coverage of Graffiti: As most of you are aware, the motivation of graffiti vandals is public exposure. Suspects especially thrive on media coverage. The BPD is asking media to cover graffiti issues in such a way that video/photos do not glorify or possibly perpetuate the crime. This can be done by using a soft focus, or by getting just portions of the graffiti in an image, so the exact image or words are not identifiable.
This can be a fine line between informing the public of the damaging affects of graffiti while not playing into the hands of the perpetrators. But please have this coverage discussion in your newsroom and remember to include not only photogs but producers, editors, etc.
Thank you for the consideration.

Graffiti Facts
• Boise has seen a 300% increase in reported graffiti in the past five years.
• More than 600 cases of graffiti were reported in Boise in 2007.
• Graffiti is one of the most commonly complained about crimes in Boise City. Citizens are concerned graffiti is evidence of neighborhood deterioration.
• Removing graffiti quickly is proven to reduce the incidence of graffiti.

  • Graffiti reports this year so far are sightly under the reported number from last year using the same time period. In 2007 from from 1/1/07 to 10/31/07 we had 515 reports of graffiti. This year from 1/1/08 to 10/31/08 we have had 481 reports documented.
  • This year the volunteers will have less graffiti to clean up in Boise neighborhoods. Officers credit property owners with an increase in cleanup efforts and swift removal of graffiti over the last year for the change.

Graffiti Issue in Boise: The vast majority of the graffiti in Boise is called "Tagging". Tagging is a signature or symbol used by a tagger or a group of taggers. Tagging is not gang graffiti. Taggers motivation is public exposure, on signs, billboards, buildings, or through the media.